Foods that I didn't care for when I started this blog, but have grown to love:
I mean, I've always loved frozen treats and warm baked goods, but I just never really saw myself as a dessert person. But man, I seem to really be developing a sweet tooth over the past couple of years.
Earlier this week, I invited a friend over for dinner, which of course meant I also invited him over for dessert. I have way way way too many dessert options in my kitchen right now, but we ended up making smoothies. And by "we", I mean I chopped up some strawberries, and he was the one who actually blended the smoothie and decided what to put in it:
Yup, that's right. A strawberry smoothie with dairy. If you've known me for long enough, you know that I've always hated mixing berries with cream. Whenever I go to smoothie or bubble tea shops, I always ask if they put dairy in their smoothies. I get my strawberry smoothies dairy-free every single time. Just two years ago, I'm sure I would have taken a sip of this smoothie and thought it was gross.
But oh my god, it was delicious.
(Hey, that's four entries in a row where I'm calling my food delicious!)
My little sister called me while the smoothie-making was in progress, and in a shocked tone she said "Jeje, you like pink things now?!"
Yeah, I guess I do.
And with that, I'm going to announce that it's time for me to put the blog posts on pause again so I can focus on other things.
v2! of the blog has been great. I've really, really been enjoying writing these entries. When I first started this blog, it was just a place for me to share photos of the food I make. Food blogs are known for having incredibly long personal anecdotes before every recipe, and I didn't want to be one of those obnoxious bloggers. But I later realized that I just need to write whatever feels right for me. I don't have recipes (yet!), so I decided to embrace the cheesy backstories.
Even though I won't be writing new posts for a while, that doesn't mean I'm totally putting the blog on hold. I've got some fun blog-related projects that I'm cooking up (heh). What will the blog look like when I write my next post? Will there be a v3?! Who knows.
But I will be back eventually.
When I was in college, well before I knew how to cook, I went on a spring break trip to Chicago with my two best friends. This was sponsored by the school and we stayed at a hostel. For some crazy reason my one friend really wanted to cook during this trip. I definitely did not, seeing as I didn't know the first thing about cooking, and even with the amount of cooking experience I have now, I still wouldn't want to cook during a vacation.
But that's what we did. We went to the grocery store, and my friend asked me "What do you want to make?" I didn't know, and she probably made several suggestions, and I probably seemed less than interested in every single one of them, which was just the first of many times one of us got annoyed at the others during this trip.
Anyway, we settled on pasta. A really simple spaghetti + pasta sauce + ground beef pasta. Of course at the time, I could barely boil water, so it still seemed really intimidating to me. But we managed. It tasted fine. And we did not cook again during that trip (thankfully). And that was the only time I had ever cooked pasta with my friend(s).
...until last week! I invited one of my friends over for an "easy" pasta meal, and since my initial pasta-with-friends session, I guess my idea of an easy meal has changed a lot. It ended up being more than he expected, heh.
But it was delicious and it is so worth it to make your own pasta sauce.
I'll definitely make more pasta meals with friends in the future (:
The last time I made guacamole, I had to run to the store to buy some chips. I had only intended to buy chips, but while I was there I noticed that these little packs of sashimi grade salmon were on sale for $5! That's a steal for half a pound! And I found some other frozen salmon that was also really cheap!
I ended up leaving the store with 2.5 lbs of salmon, some ice cream, and the chips. The next day I decided that I didn't buy enough of the sashimi grade salmon, so I bought another pound.
What did I do with all that sashimi grade salmon? Make poke of course. But I can't just eat poke by myself, so I had a couple of poke nights with some very good friends.
This is the first time I made poke without my sister, so it was a little flail-y. I don't think I ever figured out how to make the sauce, but it doesn't matter. You don't need sauce. This is delicious as is.
My friend took that picture above (obviously, because I'm in the picture). Below is from a poke night earlier this week. Such aesthetic arrangements of food.
Poke is great because you have such a large variety of fresh, healthy foods mixed with sushi rice and raw fish. Mmmmm. And making it at home is way better than going to an overpriced poke restaurant. Everyone assembles their own bowls, and everyone feels very stuffed at the end. But it's a good kind of stuffed.
A few weeks ago, I was getting lunch with my friend from one of my favorite restaurants: Taco Town. This place is right next to the office that I work in, but because I've been working at home for the past year, I haven't been able to eat here. So we were very fortunate that we happened to order food here on the last day they were open before taking a two month break.
On the other hand, they were out of carnitas that day. How can they run out of carnitas?! It's the best thing on their menu! Taco Town used to be a solid 5/5 stars for me, but recently I've had to dock them a star.
But whatever. If I can't buy carnitas I'll just make them. Except carnitas are a little more work than I like sometimes, so instead I ended up making some chili rubbed pulled pork.
Obviously these are pictures of the prep work, and I actually don't have pictures of the finished product. I invited a friend over for tacos that night, and sometimes you're just having too much fun to take pictures. I can assure you it was delicious though.
The green beans weren't bad, but I don't think I'd make that recipe again.
I also made some guac to eat with this pulled pork. Guacamole is one of the few things I can make without a recipe.
Typically when I make guac, it starts to brown after sitting in the fridge for a day. But this time was different. I had that guac in the fridge for 5 days, and it was still completely green! It was insane! Like I did some sort of magic on it!
I wanted to make the guac to put it in tacos or burrito bowls, but I knew I wouldn't need a whole avocado's worth of guac just for that. I went to the grocery store to buy some chips, and I came across guacamole-flavored tortilla chips, which made me feel kind of nostalgic. I used to hate guacamole, but when I was in high school, I loved guac-flavored chips. I guess that makes sense because guac-flavored chips taste absolutely nothing like guac. Eventually, well after graduating college, I started liking guac, but I still hated avocados. And just two years ago, my sister showed me just how delicious avocados are, and here I am now, loving all forms of avocado.
So many great uses for pulled pork. All were delicious.
(No, I haven't forgotten about carnitas. I'm absolutely going to make that at some point.)
This is from over a month ago, but I wanted to make a post out of it, because it's poke, and poke is always great.
So the main reason that I broke my $30 a week challenge was because I saw that sashimi grade salmon was on sale at my local grocery store for $6.99/lb. Which is crazy! They normally don't sell regular salmon for that cheap. (I also bought crab legs. And two pounds of shrimp. You can guess how much that cost.) Of course the catch is that it only comes in these huge 2+ lb slabs, but whatever.
My cousins and sister were visiting for the weekend, so I figured this would be a perfect opportunity to make poke again. (We also rolled up some sushi! But I didn't take any pictures of that)
Yeah, we may have gone a little overboard with the number of ingredients. But it was delicious. Some tips that we'll keep in mind to make the poke better next time:
Poke is so good.